The Senate Appropriations Committee approved legislation Wednesday to help make Oklahoma's prisons safer. Sen. Don Barrington is author of Senate Bill 1064 which would ban cell phones and any other electronic devices capable of sending or receiving any electronic communication in prisons.
"There are already a number of items that are banned in our prisons and I'm hoping this will be another one. People have no reason to bring cell phones into these facilities, and inmates don't need them since they are given opportunities to call their loved ones," said Barrington, R-Lawton. "These devices need to be banned because they can be used by inmates to conduct illegal activities as well as harass their victims, police officers and others from behind bars."
Anyone found bringing such a device into a jail, state penal institution or other place, without authority, where prisoners are located would be guilty of a felony punishable with up to two years in prison, a fine not exceeding $2,500 or both. The new law would also pertain to prisoners found with such devices in their possession.
A number of items are already not allowed in prisons including guns, knives, controlled dangerous substances, alcohol, tobacco products, and money.
SB 1064 will next be heard by the full Senate.